Every family or besties group has its own unique set of needs when it comes to emergency preparedness, but here are some emergency kit basics you may want to consider before heading out on the road.

Every Season

For communication:

No doubt you have cell phones, but you may want to check out buying a set of walkie talkies, or two-way radios. They are economical and give you extra peace of mind for communicating within groups and can be used out of cell phone range. Most sets are rechargeable, lightweight and store easily in a backpack. Another great communication tool is a hand crank flashlight with radio and siren. Whistles also work great for signaling.

Other essentials you may want to consider:

  • Jumper cables
  • Flares and/or triangle reflectors
  • A quart of motor oil
  • Change of clothes and footwear
  • First aid kit
  • Flashlight with batteries
  • Basic tool kit
  • Retractable knife or army knife with multiple functions
  • Long life sealed food (calorie bars work great)
  • Water!
  • Light sticks
  • Space blankets
  • Lighters or water-resistant matches
  • Tow rope
  • Roadside flasher
  • Face masks
  • Hand sanitizer


All the basics for every season plus:

  • Plenty of fresh bottled water
  • Rain gear
  • Insect repellent
  • Sunscreen
  • Light blankets
  • Ground cover and overhead tarp


Brrrr. You’ll want to make sure you have aggressive winter tires and your heater is in top running condition before you leave but for your survival pack, along with every-season basics, you’ll want to pack your trunk with:

  • Warm blankets or sleeping bags for minus zero temperatures
  • Folding snow shovel
  • Firestarter
  • Tap activated heat packs

Prepacked Survival Kits

You have several options to choose from for prepackaged emergency roadside kits that are available from local retailers and online. Some kits focus on roadside equipment like flares, warning triangles and fire extinguishers. Other kits are stocked with individuals in mind and carry packaged water, blankets, first aid supplies and sealed food. If the latter is the type of kit you want to buy, be aware of the number of people the kit supplies. If you are preparing for a family of four and the kit you buy is for one person, you will need four kits. Remember to check expiration dates and switch out seasonal kits if you need to, so they don’t get too hot and spoil or freeze in your trunk.

Pre-Trip Tune-ups

Whether you are heading out on a day drive or camping for the weekend, getting your car in good running order is part-and-parcel with preparedness. Along with emergency kits, we recommend an overall vehicle check and tune-up before heading out on the road for any distance, especially if you plan on driving off-road or to a remote location. Keeping your oil and all fluids clean and at the appropriate levels is critical to keeping your engine in good repair to avoid roadside breakdowns. Call us to book your appointment.

Have fun this summer. Be safe.

For your pre-trip checkup
From the team at Advance Auto Service in Kamloops